Now that we are in the middle of the Coronavirus outbreak and we have been encouraged to Stay Home, the question is how is it possible to sell or buy a home? I first want to let you know that is is being done and we are able to continue with buying/selling real estate with added precautions. The need for housing hasn’t changed. People moving here from out of state still need homes to live in, smaller families still need a bigger home to move into and landlords looking to sell their rental properties still need the house to close.
It looks very different today than it did a month ago, but here is what I am doing to make sure buyers and sellers are protected and safe at the same time while still marketing the home so that it sells.
For Listings I am creating a Matterport 3D virtual tour for every listing I have that allows the buyer to feel like they are in the house and can click on different rooms to look around in a 360 degree view. Click Here to view a sample from the company. I am doing drone videos for any neighborhood that has something unique like a lake subdivision or a golf course. This allows the buyer to see the area. Click Here to see one of my previously sold listings. I am doing a walk through video that feels like you start at the front door and move throughout the house to give the feel of actually being there. Of course, professional photos add to all of this marketing. I will have a sign at the front of the door stating that the buyers must wear booties, gloves and a mask while inside the house. We are asking every seller to open all doors ( bedrooms, closets, pantry, cabinets) anything that a buyer would want to look at without having to touch any door handles. We also want all lights on so buyers don’t need to touch any light switches while inside. Sellers will be encouraged to clean and disinfect all handles and switches after the showing to protect themselves. I am also asking the sellers to have a home inspection done prior to listing the home (if possible) this will be posted in the mls along with the HOA CC&R’s. Any obstacles we can overcome prior to the showing helps with only getting the exact perfect match in to see your home. We are trying to limit showings to only the ones that can and will be able to close on the deal.
For Buyers I am doing my best to find hand sanitizer, gloves and booties. These will be put on right before entering each house so that we don’t get infected at the homes we are looking at and also so we can discard after each house and not bring any germs into the car. If buyers have a mask, I am encouraging them to wear one.
These questions must be asked of every buyer before allowing them into my listing but also before I show a home:
1)Has the buyer watched the video tour of the home and viewed all of the photos in the MLS? Have they drived by the house and through the neighborhood?
2)Has the buyer read through the inspection report? This saves problems from coming up after contract acceptance.
3)Has the buyer read the HOA documents?
4)Does the buyer have a pre-qualification form from a lender or proof of Liquid funds?
5)Is the buyer ready and willing to write an offer today if they loved the property? If they can’t move until 3 months from now, there is no reason to look at homes yet during this health crisis.
6)Does the buyer need to sell their current home before purchasing a new home? If so, then probably not wise to start looking. The market may take awhile to get their current home under contract.
I know these questions may seem tough, but it really is to protect everyone and weed out the buyers who would not want that specific house anyway. 9 times out of 10 these questions allow the buyer to realize that house is not for them without even stepping inside.
Once we get the home under contract inspectors are able to do video inspections or zoom/facetime meetings about the house. Lenders have started allowing drive by appraisals on some loans, and some title companies are offering mobile notary services or even an e sign notary. So, we are adapting to make sure it is a stress free as possible in this unchartered territory.
Eventually these will loosen as the threat of the virus decreases but I wanted to let you know in the meantime I am taking as many precautions as possible to serve my clients. I am here for you when you are ready to buy or sell a house. In the interim stay safe and stay connected with me on social media so I can see how you are doing. You can click on the links below to connect with me on social media.